Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Pakka Milenge

I hate goodbyes with a true and full disdain.  I either rush through them in an effort not to cry or linger on "the lasts" attempting to savor every moment I can with those precious to me causing even more emotional duress.

It's been a month of goodbyes and I'm not sure I can take much more of it. Don't misunderstand, I am well aware that goodbyes here mean warm hellos somewhere else. I am anxious to hug and laugh and celebrate all God has done this year with my beloved community on the other side of the world. But the goodbyes are wicked hard. Can I just get on a plane and avoid all of the emotions that await in the next few days?

Okay okay, I know that wouldn't be right. 

What I hate so much about goodbyes is that they are so final. I don't know where God would put me in the future. I pray I will be back in India and that I'll meet my other international friends again, but maybe that's not what God has planned for me. (Oh please God, let that be planned for me!)

In the midst of one of my most emotional goodbyes yet, my sweet friend bid me "pakka milenge." I had heard the phrase "phir milenge," which is roughly translated as "see you again." I was going to try to use that phrase as I said my goodbyes, but it seemed inadequate. Too informal in some way, almost flippant. But pakka milenge? It was perfect. It means "we will meet again, for sure." 

For sure. 

I had this overwhelming sense of peace. Forget the maybes and what ifs, Steiger! Meeting these dear, sweet friends again is a sure thing. It's possible we may not meet on earth, but we will meet again as we worship Jesus forever in heaven. It's a sure thing. 

Leaving India may be one of the hardest things I've ever had to do, but I rest on this promise of God. 

So to my precious family that I've already given final hugs to and those I have yet to embrace, I say with bold confidence "pakka milenge."



Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Ten on Ten: i love my life

guys, i really love my life.
it isn't glamorous and it's far from perfect,
but it is great.

here's a snapshot, or ten, of what life is like:

 "Humble yourself....cast your burdens on him"

 nurse life

traffic jam


 holi remnants


 russian doll suitcases

because anemia


 these women.

happy ten on ten!
ten on ten button



Tuesday, February 10, 2015

ten on ten: T.I.I.

hope you enjoy these ten photos 
on this lovely tenth of february!

room with a view

 language and immune system building

wounds for days

x-rays and ekgs


indian pharmacy

sun and talks of the Son


health class collaborating

teeth brushing friendship



the time difference makes 
linking a bit more difficult:
ten on ten button

Monday, February 2, 2015

Three Months

today is the official three month marker of life at the ashram.
and it was also one of the biggest emotional 
roller coasters of my time here.

the day started out at 5:15am with a phone call,
a patient who had been very sick was dying 
and i was asked to come check him out.
i headed downstairs.
couldn't feel a pulse, could barely see his chest rise and fall.
i could hear his heart beat with my stethoscope.
checked his sugar, tried to check his vitals.
couldn't see him breath, so i listened again.

later that morning, we found out another patient had died.
we helped clean and prepare the bodies.
the men of the ashram gathered to remember.
all i could think was, "again God?"

with a heavy heart, i set out for the old delhi learning center.
once there, i was greeted with huge smiles and an abundance of hugs.
vibrant energy filled the room.
i can't really describe the joy and privilege it brings to sit with children who basically have nothing, 
but who smile and play and love despite their material "insufficiency".
and i get to love them back.
my heart almost burst!

when i arrived back at the ashram,
three new patients were here.
and, as my teammate said,
three more lives to share great love with
for the sake of Christ.

today was filled with extremes.
so much sorrow,
so much joy.
and as difficult as today has been,
i am grateful for it.
it has been a reminder of what is important.
life is short.
really short.
but love has come and love has won.
Christ has come and Christ has won the victory.

as i look forward to the coming months,
i pray that my love of God will be abundant.
and i pray that my love for people will increase along with it.
with eagerness and expectation,
i look forward to what God will do here.
and i seriously cannot wait to join in!



Friday, January 2, 2015

Simple Faith

it's 2015.
what the what!?

i also turned another year older yesterday.
i'm almost not twenty
and that's hella weird. 

i didn't always love having my birthday so close 
to christmas and the new year.
but now that i'm older, i really like it.
i am doubly reminded of all the good that has happened
and am energized with new and fresh starts.

i'm not the biggest fan of "new year's" blogs.
but this year, i really felt the need to write one.
so continue reading at your own risk

i came to india with the theme of "be brave with your life."
i think this is still very much the theme, 
but in 2015, i want to rephrase it.
"live with a simple faith."

i don't know about you, but i have a tendency to over think things.
i want to analyze the situation and all the possible outcomes,
and maybe then i'll make a decision.
it's not bad to do that, but when it comes to following Jesus, 
it can be crippling.
Jesus told us to have faith like a child. 
we have a patient at the ashram who has developmental delays
and acts like a child,
and i love it.
he is constantly smiling and laughing,
and he is constantly working hard and helping wherever he can.
no questions asked.
he acts in simple faith.
he is a constant reminder to have faith like a child,
serving with joy.

this is what i want for the coming year.
i so long to be the kind of person who just says yes.
    yes to going on sporadic trips,
    yes to zip lining,
    yes to driving into delhi by myself,
    yes to praying for the stranger,
    yes to sharing Christ in whatever hindi i have,
    yes to risk being a fool for the sake of Christ.

the goal for 2015?
live with simple faith,
for Christ's glory,
and my good.

Lord, help me to follow you with a simple faith.
give me the grace to trust you deeply enough to walk
into whatever you call with simple faith.
continue to help me be brave with this life you have gifted.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Why Not?

my german teammates are pretty awesome.
i started to notice that they said the phrase "why not" quite often.
at first, i was kind of annoyed by it.
now, i love it.

it's a constant reminder to me,

the ever-doubting cynic,
to just say yes and enjoy.

in other news,
life here has been pretty amazing.
it hasn't always been easy, but it has been great. 
for recap sake, here's what's been going on the last month. 

nini and i went to Jodhpur.
it's known as the blue city.
night trains, lots of walking and exploring, 
and a bollywood movie with new friends. 
it was a great time away.

we also took another trip,
but this time, to the mountainous town of mussoorie.
hiking through villages and
a visit to sir george everest former home were on the itinerary.
i loved the clean air, the presence of clouds,
and the chance to watch the sunrise over the mountains.

when we took a break from traveling, we did some work.
well, kind of.

chai breaks with the paper

 best street food i ever ate

 posing for pictures because we're foreigners 

 visiting the delhi house's other learning center next to this
and learning about my role there

 special food for thanksgiving!

 a trip with our ashram family to some sites around delhi

nights on the veranda chilling and debriefing

selling the guys' jelwery at the german embassy's
annual christmas market

going to a hindu wedding

 goofing off in the clinic

 using a selfie stick

spending some great times with some awesome families.

this month has also been hard. 
in my time here, eight patients have died.
so many times, the patients come to us a bit too late.
they are only with us a few days before they pass.
but i am so glad they come here and are able to hear of Jesus.

watching so much death is really hard.
my medical mind wants to know how and why
and i want to fix it.
but honestly, there's no way i can.

God has called me to something bigger:
prayer and faithfulness.
to pray without ceasing for the men who come through here.
for their health, for their souls.
to be a faithful servant of the King,
to put others before myself and to speak of Jesus often. 

it's really that simple.
please, join me in praying for the men of the ashram,
both for their physical and spiritual healths.

i mean, why not?

Monday, November 10, 2014

ten on ten: welcome to india

so it's technically the eleventh here, but eh, who cares.
i thought a ten on ten post might be a good way for y'all to see a bit of life here.
so away we go!

first off, breathing class

 breakfast of champions

 prepping to dress some wounds

 waiting at the bus stop to start my journey into delhi

 then transfering to the metro
(please note the selfie)

 my view at the registry office for three hours

 not getting ripped off by the rickshaw drivers is my fave.

busin on the way home

 our third roommate

it's pretty here sometimes.

today was pretty great.
taking two hours worth of public transportation by myself was quite the victory.
but today ends with a heavy heart.
one of the patients died tonight very suddenly.
we aren't entirely sure the cause, but it was very hard to be a part of.

sadly, this is often life here. 
seemingly preventable diseases lead to early and frequent deaths.
even more heartbreaking is that so many die without the knowledge of the King.

please take the next few moments, days, weeks to lift up the people of India with me.

linking up:
ten on ten button